During this season of Passover we relive our hasty departure from Egypt in search of a new life free from the tyranny of slavery. We did not have much time to say our farewells or think too quickly on what we would bring with us, We just took the opportunity we were given to strike out into the unknown in search of freedom. As I prepare to say my final farewells to a community I have served for the past decade, I am grateful to have the opportunity to say my good goodbyes in a meaningful and loving way.
To this end I planned a series of ‘goodbye’ events at Temple Shalom. They really began with my 10th Anniversary Concert which brought together many special people with whom I’ve worked and partnered over the years. Watch the video above to see a special final blessing “Beneath The Wings of Shechinah.”
The Shir Shalom music Shabbat in March featured the dedicated and loving members of our choir, soloists Josh Milton and his daughter Anabel Milton, accompanist Andrew Stewart who has been by my side for more than a decade along with beloved players Carl Tretter, Diane Cline and Chris Pierorazio! (see pictures below) It was one of the most memorable services of my life and I will treasure it as a tribute to all that we have shared together. Afterwards, tears flowed and hugs abounded!
As I was leading tefillah (prayer) last Sunday and announced that it would be my final prayer service with the religious school. I noticed one boy in the second row crying and clearly very upset. I am an empath so his emotions really effected me. I kept myself together for the rest of the service and afterward I sat next to him and gently asked what was wrong and if I could be of any help. He answered that he was crying because he would miss me! I answered that I would miss him too and then we cried together!
One final service is planned for Friday April 13th at 7:30 p.m at Temple Shalom where I will be joined by the youth, teen and adult choirs as well as some special guests for a final farewell and festive Oneg. If you are in the area, please join us or tune in on our live stream: www.templeshalom.net
Seeing the tears flow from those I love reinforces all I have done has been for blessing! I know we will continue to be part of one another’s lives and I will always treasure the memories and relationships nurtured throughout these years.